I love Neil Gaiman’s writing. He is one of the authors that just strikes a chord with me. I have thoroughly enjoyed everything I have read by him, and this story is no exception.
The unnamed narrator of the story is back in his hometown in rural Sussex for a funeral. With time to kill, he decides to take a ride and ends up at the home of a childhood friend, her mother, and grandmother. When he was seven, he met the Hempstocks and befriended Lettie, the daughter. They drew the boy into their surpernatural world and take him on an adventure he only recalls now that he is back.
As is common with Mr. Gaiman’s tales, he draws heavily on mythology here. The three aspects of the goddess, the water of life myths, and a healthy dose of evil just bordering our world are all gathered here. The story is told with style and grace, and nothing feels cliched. It is a bit whimsical at times, and at others frightening. Gaiman has a very defined voice in his writing, and it comes through clearly here. I found myself hearing his voice as the narrator in my head as I read it.
The Ocean at the End of the Lane is Gaiman’s first adult novel since Anansi Boys, and it was well worth the wait. I recommend it highly.